Good Samaritan – Be one!

Raise you vibrations to attract the good, and only the best will be filtered your way.

When travelling, one has to be vigilant at all times. You got to keep your bags in check, your documents and the currency you are carrying. Not to forget, the constant improvisation on the ever effervescent contingency plan.

Before I set off for my first Solo Trip, I was a nervous wreck, I was freaking out. For the first time in my life I experienced ‘Cold Feet’. I now understand what the Brides, Grooms, Parents-to-be or anyone else feel when they have a panic attack. I couldn’t relax, I couldn’t talk, I couldn’t eat, I had constant headaches days before my travel.

That’s when my friend KK came to my rescue, he said “Nam, don’t worry! You will be fine, you have traveled before and its gonna be a walk in the park for you. Just relax, breathe and GO!” Honestly I dint believe a word of what he said, for I was thinking of almost cancelling my ticket! Yes! I panicked probably because I was travelling to a non-English speaking country for the first time ever. KK said “Just be positive, and only the good ones will come your way. Be good and you will attract only good people. But stay vigilant and be street smart”.

I finally relaxed and took it one step at a time, I remembered to count my blessings and keep looking for the good. And many Good Samaritans came my way! From my first pit stop at a transit in KL, I had encounters with amazing good hearts. Yes good people have good souls, you can sense it, it feels good – very good to be around them. I met a person from Switzerland who was in KL to see the Petronas – we soon became friends as she was also a solo traveler, we shopped and had lunch together. We had a fantastic time.

When I reached my destination I had several encounters with Good Samaritans. This travel taught me many things, one of them was that there are angels all around. Look for good and you will find it. Help comes in various unexpected ways.

One morning after breakfast i saw that a couple left the restaurant but they dropped their Subway card on their way out. I knew this was a lifeline, I handed it to them and they were grateful for the gesture and asked me what my plans were for the day and instantly tore off a bunch of sheets from their immaculately filed travel file and gave it to me. To this day I don’t know how I would have managed that day ‘without’ that info. It was so detailed and it was ‘absolutely necessary’ and the universe just filled the jigsaw puzzle for me. I was overwhelmed.

Help comes in various forms, every single day we need to remind ourselves that, ‘The Best is YET to come’.

Golden Mantra: Do unto others what you would have them do unto you!

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Wok Over the Water

The delicious, authentic local cuisine one gets to relish on travels, could be THE motive to travel for a few wanderers. Guilty!!! 😉

I have heard the elders in my family say, the food tastes better if cooked with love. Another friend Parag strongly believes, the energy with which the meal is prepared could be in your favor or it could be harmful. I totally agree to this. Probably that’s why you can’t really replicate the exact taste and flavor of a dish, and it differs from person to person.

I treated myself to a meal at the Asian Wok restaurant – famously known to be over the waters. Located in the North Male Atoll – 90 mins by speed boat from the airport at Maldives. Once in a way I guess its ok to pamper yourself 🙂

The chefs are interactive, and they looked very happy in their jobs. I guess that is recipe #1 – to be happy 🙂 The vegetables looked so crispy and fresh – the meal was sumptuous. I once saw a movie in which the chef comments about the flavor in the vegetables differing from region to region. He says the taste is not the same. I guess sometimes it feels like the vegetables do have life.

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Hand picked organic vegetables at the Asian Wok – Maldives.

The Asian Wok restaurant is built over the waters, strategically located at the entrance of the Meerufenfushi island – it provides a panoromic view of the ocean, the neighbouring local island to the west, the speed boats decorating the turquoise blue ocean & a splendid view of the fancy looking yatch anchored at the harbor.

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My first glimpse of the Asian Wok 🙂

The view from the ‘walk through windows’, is the icing on the cake. You could just jump off the ledge to take a swim, check out the colorful reef, swim with the harmless black tipped baby sharks and get back to sipping your wine and enjoying a custom-made dish of your choice. The view is breathtaking and I couldn’t really capture the moment in my camera frame. This place is like walking into a dream while you are awake.

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At the window seat – ready for the dive! Dreamy!!!

A visit to this magical land, you will be overwhelmed with contentment and gratitude, for just being there.

A Washed up Boat.

When I landed at the Island resort at Maldives, I took off to see the stunning beauty of the Ocean flanked by the immaculate white sand on the beach. Not any beach – a beach with sand that looked like powdered diamonds. Very soon I reached the Jetty, all lit up at dusk and this boat was in my line of sight. It looked beautiful and strong, yet it had an air about it telling me how it survived the oceans wrath. It was a beautiful piece of art, shaped to perfection and built to sail the massive, endless Ocean.

A bartender at the Kanuni bar told me how this boat was washed up ashore and the inhabitants of the island decided to restore it and in turn the boat would add some spice to the shoreline and the beach. It was a fantastic idea – as this sight looked so stunning on the white sand beach in the middle of nowhere.

Everyone passing this boat would smile, pose along side for pictures. I am sure these pictures would make a beautiful topic of conversations back home.

Did this innocent boat know that it would bring smiles to so many people? Did this boat give up hope in the middle of a storm? Did this boat  finally yield after being strong for far too long? Did this boat have a captain, a crew?

When being washed up ashore, the boat must have felt apprehensive about the change. All its life it sailed the ocean but now there was no more water.

Here it is – providing strength, hope, and a convinced notion that the days to come would only get better. If only this washed up boat could narrate its version.

Heavenly Abode – Mauritius

“Mauritius was made first, and then heaven. Heaven was copied after Mauritius” – Mark Twain 

I honestly thought this was a wee bit exaggerated, until I saw Mauritius for real. I realised what Mark Twain wrote was really a very subtle attempt to explain what the grandeur of this immaculate country is all about. The whole place is picturesque. The pristine waters have a different tinge of indigo mixed with blue that looks metallic when the waters shimmer in the endless landscape of Africa. 

MahebergThe View from the Boulevard at Mahebourg – South-East of Mauritius.

Located in the middle of the Indian Ocean, thousands of kilometers off the coast of the continental Africa this heavenly abode boasts of possessing some of the worlds best visual treats. The air is crisp, skies ink blue, and the lush canopy a deep shade of green. The roads are jet black and the motorways meet the horizon, as far as the eye can see. 

One can’t help but notice the untouched beauty of nature. It’s the energy in Mauritius that makes it such an exotic destination. People across the world secretly hope to reach Mauritius to see for themselves what the media coverage and the hype is all about.

Well, MRU has a lot more to offer than just the scenery. The beaches are pristine with silver sands that feels very soft under your bare feet, the waters are different shades of turquoise and various degrees of blue. Visibility at snorkeling areas in Blue Bay is several meters in-depth with a beautiful shade of light blue that doesn’t just feel beautiful but also soothes the soul. Immediately after being immersed in these beautiful water bodies one can’t help but thank the universe for making it possible to arrive at this destination. I believe the ones who reach Mauritius truly feel blessed to have witnessed something this close to perfection. 

Often I get bombarded with the eminent question – Nam what’s so special about Mauritius….isn’t it just like Maldives? Why this destination…? Well, for starters I’d always say – No two places feel the same, they look-alike but not the same. The place, the energy, the aura, everything feels different and these places have their own secret stories to share.

While in Mauritius, it is really hard to give your camera shutter some rest. You will have an incredible undying urge to click as many pictures as possible because you would want to relish the memories for the days to come. 

What’s so special about this country that grows loads of sugarcane? The view of the fields is magnificent, luscious green canopy covered mountains jutting out of the crystal blue ocean is a sight so splendid that it really did take my breath away! The landscapes look fresh and all over the boulevards are inscriptions of history and very significant events that took place in the country’s rich and entertaining history.

Mauritius is a volcanic island with varying temperatures, at the coast it’s pretty hot and humid but as you scale up  the terrain just a few miles from the coast the temperature drops drastically. My favorite was Vacoas – beautiful residential villas embalmed in a blanket of moisture laden air and the climate in this region is very pleasant – around 20 degrees. 

The view at Casela Nature Reserve is breathtaking – you can see the lush green mountains followed by the motorway and then the ocean, you can’t really tell when the Ocean meets the sky! It’s a beautiful unison, a melodious harmony – a visual treat. 

I would urge everyone to make an attempt to visit this place, it’s exhilarating & rejuvenating at the same time. How about this – save up some dough for treating yourself. Because this gift you give yourself will last a lifetime. 

Mauritius is truly worthy of all the praise and the reputation it enjoys. 

 

String of Pearls – Maldives

No words or pictures could ever do justice to what one has to experience when visiting the Maldives. Although some might argue that it’s the same sand, same sun and the same beach – there is no other possible substitute for the beauty and serenity of this place. This is a picture taken at the Crown Resorts at the North Male Atoll.

One word of caution though – visiting Maldives will spoil everything else on earth 😉 The waters are crystal clear with an astonishing clarity for several meters.

When you reach the airport you will be transported to your resort by either a boat or a sea plane. The view is breath-taking! The Ocean is gorgeous and the endless expanse looks like a painting where the painter has played with different shades of blue.

It’s a total bliss to be lost in the middle of the ocean – clear air, absolutely zero pollution and overwhelming desire to just stay calm and listen to the ocean, breathe the air, savor the amazing sea food & wake up to sting rays that have come close to the shore.

It’s an excellent place for snorkeling although the reef is slightly bleached. The aquatic fauna is brilliant, the reef sharks and the black tipped sharks do make a regular appearance. The sea turtles are a treat to the eyes and so are the various schools of different species of fish. The spot where the reef ends and the view drops to the endless abyss is mesmerizing and the feeling can’t be emulated no matter what.

It’s definitely a place of relaxation. A wonderful week spent in this paradise is the best bet to pamper your soul.